Monday, January 28, 2008

Seafood summit Monday

What does it mean when agreement is reached among an ENGO and two European seafood giants, (Young's and Espersen), on promoting sustainability? That's what happened today when I spoke on a panel with Simon Rilatt of Young's and Alex Olsen of Espersen, regarding how to improve unsustainable fisheries.

All this and more from Barcelona, the "city of Modernism," including an odyssey in search of the finest cuisine Barcelona has to offer.

But first, back to the Seafood Summit panel on improving unsustainable fisheries. Simon from Young's, Alex from Esperson, and I all agreed on the need for seafood businesses to engage in fixing unsustainable fisheries instead of routinely just walking away. And, we agreed quite a bit on how to do that. It's simple to state but hard to do. Seafood business can use their influence to fix problems like overfishing and habitat damage from fishing. This means ask managers to tighten regulations, encourage fishermen to change and provide some incentives, etc.

And it's not just a task for the big guys. If you're an individual, you can join conservation groups like the Ocean Conservancy, become an online activist or a superactivist and lend your voice to public debates on fishery management, in writing or in person. It's fun and rewarding, and you'll never look at fish the same again once you've done your part for conservation.

Also I found other good conclusions from more panels and the ubiquitous hallway chats (Seafood Summit's reputation is more action in the hallways than the panel sessions). Much talk about "what is sustainability," how do we measure it, and most importantly how do we deliver it to customers. That and the sharp laughter, strained or mirthful, about Stinky Fish, now rumored to be coming back after some rather stiff editing.

After all that and more, I wandered on a trek with OC colleagues Koyel and Kathryn looking for a particularly hard to find restaurant in old Barcelona. After circling the expected location for 20 minutes or so, we settled on another convenient seafood restaurant for some very nice seafood paella and Spanish wine, with a vow to get better directions and return again tomorrow. I've just got to sample some molecular gastronomy, and that's not a snail biology quiz.

2 comments:

Rick MacPherson said...

in your sustainable seafood frenzy, be sure not to miss filling your gullet with serrano ham! oh my goodness, my mouth is watering just thinking of all the jamon at your fingertips!

Mark Powell said...

Delectable indeed, I've sampled the serrano ham and iberico ham, along with the seafood delights, thanks Rick.